Two Humans in a Partnership

Even before the first human being took on a dog as partner, humans were forming couples.  When two human being cooperate they may simply add their efforts, as when two people cooperate to lift a log, or they may divide their energies in complementary directions. For instance, one member of the pair may collect a large volume of fruit or berries while the other is hunting for antelope. The result may well be more than they both can eat, so they can dry the surplus of each acquisition and put it in storage in a secure, dry place. If they were to acquire a dog they would have economical help in hunting and guarding, and if they were to acquire a cat they would have cost effective help in protecting collected nuts, dried fruit, smoked meat, etc.

two humans in partnershiptwo humans in partnership

It is easy to see that in many different ways a pair of individuals doing the daily tasks of hunting and gathering could be more than twice as effective as either one of them alone. There are also benefits in times of injury of ill health. Success in these fundamental tasks will easily lead to increases in material savings, and the possibility of taking turns in guarding their savings cache will improve their long-term retention of the advantages they have created for themselves.

Companionship and the opportunity to have someone to communicate with, to plan together with, etc. are obvious benefits to such an arrangement. It is also clear that in times of danger these people can take different watches through the night and do other things to increase their mutual security.

A third outcome of such a partnership can be progeny. In many ways this outcome is more than the addition of an economic benefit or the addition of a focus of joy and affection; it is a form of saving. The lore and knowledge of the hunter-gatherers is bestowed upon the upcoming generations. Parents and grandparents will in turn be aided by children and grandchildren.

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